City is Moving Forward with a New Charter High School and No One Cares

Does our city commission want a high school because we need one or for their own ego?

Does our city commission want a high school because we need one or for their own ego?

By: Sharon Aron Baron

The City has been very sneaky about building a new Charter High School in town. They say it’s wanted and needed, but by who?

JP Taravella, Coral Glades, Piper and even Stoneman Douglas are all under-enrolled and are all listed as schools currently accepting reassignments for the 2015-2016 school year.

The proposal for a new charter high school was casually slipped into a workshop agenda seeking RFP (request for proposals) without even line-itemizing it. The city manager brought this up on the January 21, 2014 workshop agenda as item number seven, which wasn’t on the agenda, nor was it ever amended to include this item, and if you weren’t paying attention you would have missed it.  If you watch the the video available online, you’ll see the discussion.

It seems the city manager was quite prepared to bring the item forward for discussion as well, which means there was probably enough time for it to be added.  Maybe then, the public could have known about it.

Anyway, the commission wants Tamarac to have its own high school because they believe our city needs a high school.

At the candidate forum in October, Michelle Gomez said the City had asked for another school in the past, but the Broward Schools has denied the City.  This is true as they were not building any new schools anywhere in the county. However, she mentions times have changed and we are starting to have more and more children.  How can we possibly be having more children in our City if our City isn’t really growing?  Where are these children coming from?

She mentions that they put out an RFP so the RFP could decide.  Well, you don’t let an RFP decide.  The commission decides.  Of course if you throw out a worm, the fish is going to take the bait.

It just boggles my mind. No facts, no numbers. They just want it. They want another school.  It doesn’t matter that if a school is under-enrolled after the first 20-day period that some teachers get fired. Do they realize this?  The number of teachers in a public school is contingent on the number of students attending that school.  Say we take more students away from JP Taravella, then more teachers are fired.  Thanks Tamarac!

As if the public doesn’t feel any more left out, I get this letter that only coaches are invited to a special meeting with the City of Tamarac regarding this now middle/high school. 

letter-charter

Click to make larger

What is going on? 

Do we really need a Charter High School?  Why is it so close to Kings Point, a senior community? Why does our city want a school of their own so badly?  Not one commission member has a child in public school and our own city manager doesn’t even have his kids in Tamarac schools.  Why here?   

Are they going to build it first, then justify the numbers and the reasons, because that’s a lousy way to take State dollars away from other Broward public schools that are doing just fine and fund a Charter School which most if not many are for-profit anyway. 

Does anyone even care what’s going on in City Hall?  Or do the only care about decking their own halls?

About Sharon Aron Baron

Sharon Aron Baron Sharon Aron Baron is the Editor of Talk Media and writer for Tamarac Talk and Coral Springs Talk. Tamarac Talk was created in 2010 to provide News, Views and Entertainment for the residents of Tamarac and to give resident's a forum. We are not affiliated with the City of Tamarac. That's why this site can be occasionally opinionated and obviously open.

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  • Pierrette Arcand Jean Feuillet

    I agree with you: We don’t need no stinking high school in Tamarac. But like everything else with governments, even if the taxpayers are against it, they’ll use their executive pen to shove it in our throat and tax us for that new school.

  • Anonymous

    There already is a High school in Tamarac. Pivot Charter is grade 6 – 12. They are located at Southgate and Pine Island in the Publix shopping center. This is there 2nd year.

    • The City of Tamarac will be working out a deal or providing land for this school whereby it does not for Pivot. The City of Tamarac needs to stay out of the Charter School business.

  • commenter8

    Check the campaign finance records and you may find an explanation of why this is happening. For city commission candidates the campaign finance information is not available on the Broward County Supervisor of Elections website. The city of Tamarac keeps that information. And they don’t publish it on the city’s website either! But it is a public record, covered by Florida’s public records laws and available to anyone who asks to see it.

    Sharon, maybe it’s time for some investigative reporting here. Not only into the financing of city commission campaigns, but also into why this information is not freely available on the Internet!

    And yes, this stealth charter school project should be killed ASAP.

    • It is online but it is hidden well at http://tamarac.org/index.aspx?nid=320 I keep close tabs to who is donating and watching their votes. For instance, Harry Dressler voted YES for a sign variance just one month after receiving a substantial donation from an attorney. He denied this on video. But the facts are there. I will be watching our commission. This is what happens when you willingly take money from big vendors including charter schools, garbage companies, and the like. You must always DISCLOSE that this has occurred before you vote. In the case of the sign variance Dressler did not.

  • ExResident

    Probably pressure from developers – wanting a new school to advertise with their developments. The stuff under construction near the Turnpike is zoned for Boyd Anderson. Not sure how well Taravella is perceived.